Sunday, October 29, 2017

Kids' D&D Session Report: The Isle of Niln

Labyrinth is excited to announce a significant expansion to our youth Dungeons and Dragons program, incorporating the elements of a dynamic, long-term campaign. A major portion of this effort is the creation of an epic fantasy world that will be the center of our ongoing adventures. Our staff has been working diligently (and having a ton of fun) outlining some of the general aspects of the world, but most of the details will actually be developed by the players during the gaming sessions. On Sunday, October 22, 2017, during our last Kids' D&D event, two groups of young adventurers were first introduced to the Isle of Niln. Here are reports from Camilla and Ben, our staff who served as the DMs for the games. Eventually, we hope that some of the kids will help us record the games, and that they will be shared here on the Labyrinth blog, so that friends, families and other Guild members can stay updated on the stories.

Table 1: Camilla's Table

In their first quest in the Isle of Niln, one of our groups of adventurers set out to explore Fort Stonespur, a potential headquarters for the Guild. The party arranged a rendezvous with the ranger Davdri, deep in the Razorback forest. From there, they made their way along the riverbank to the fall where Stonespur was said to be found. They investigated the fort, finding it to be an ancient Elven outpost, overrun with troglodytes and a gelatinous cube. A magically sealed door was opened with a riddle, revealing a large arcane artifact installed inside. The adventurers decided that the fort was perfect, and preparations are underway to make it the Guild's first home.

Table 2: Ben's Table (They were unfortunately not quite as lucky.)

Our adventure began in the Muddy Mule, a cozy tavern in the middle of the Isle of Niln.  Our hearty band of adventurers was greeted by Ander Kingsley, a corpulent dwarf who serves as recruiter for the Guild of Heroes.  He told them the Guild needed their help winning over the population of Niln, who had thus far seen the newly formed organization as outsiders and conquerors.  The Guild seeks only to restore peace and justice to the impoverished Isle, so the willing assistance of the locals is necessary.

Thankfully, Ander had a plan to bring the people of Niln on board.  An ancient relic, the Horn of the Four Winds--an important symbol of the island’s resistance to Imperial conquest 1000 years ago--was rumored to rest nearby in the town of Gullsperch.  After some persuasion, Ander decided to accompany the group and the next morning they rode out, seeking the Horn.

The party arrived in Gullsperch and sought out Mama Gee, the village elder and keeper of the horn.  She brought them to an ancient amphitheater with a statue of the horn at its center.  In order to claim it, she told them, they had to prove themselves worthy of it.  They must pass three tests: the Test of Mind, the Test of Body, and the Test of Spirit.

The group elected to attempt the Test of Spirit first.  One by one, Mama Gee asked the group what they would do if they unlocked the ultimate power of the horn.  Some sought to destroy it, others to use it to end injustice, but most chose to hide it away, where it could do no harm, but where it could be called upon if there was ever great need.  Mama Gee found their answers truthful and wise, and the group passed their first test.

Next, the group attempted the Test of Body.  The plants overgrowing the arena came to life and attacked them.  A nail-biting fight ensued.  Several members of the party were knocked unconscious, but in the end (and thanks to some particularly effective fire spells) the party defeated the Blights and passed their second test.

Angered by the threat to their lives, the party refused to begin the third test, but instead interrogated Mama Gee, demanding to know the purpose of the trials she put them through.  At that moment, an envoy from the Empire appeared. 

Ser Bluto Vel Alrich, a fire giant, and Commandant of Fort Kraos, arrived with a coterie of a dozen armed guards.  He demanded the group stand aside while the Empire claimed the horn.  When pressed for explanations, Vel Alrich told the group the Empire sought to reestablish their foothold on Niln and that the seizure of the horn would be a potent symbol in the heart and minds of the locals.  Outnumbered and outmatched, the party stood aside while Vel Alrich ripped the statue from its plinth and carried it from the arena.

Before the empire could leave, though, the party spotted a dissident prisoner held by the guards.  Seeing an opportunity to gain favor with the empire and hopefully eventually figure out a way to get the Horn back, while also sparing the man a more painful end, one of the members of our party offered to execute him.  Others in the party disagreed, and Onox, the cleric, leaped in the way of the blow.  Wary of the groups' infighting, Vel Alrich carried out the sentence himself and told the group they had much to prove before they earned the trust of the empire.

So, the party returned home, having lost the relic to the empire, having betrayed the trust of the local islanders by attempting to murder one of their own, and having failed to gain favor with the dangerous Vel Alrich.  The Guild has more work to do now than ever before.  But the adventure is just beginning, and who knows where the story might lead.

Our next Kids' D&D adventures will be held on Sunday, November 26 from 2:30 to 5:30pm. Registration is now open on Eventbrite.

Dungeons and Dragons is a legendary, fantasy, "pen and paper" role-playing game played by millions worldwide. Players take on the role of a fantasy hero and help tell a story in collaboration with their fellow players and a Dungeon Master. For more information about Labyrinth's D&D sessions for kids, birthday parties, and camps, please contact the store via e-mail or phone: 202-544-1059.

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